Hudson at the Holly Building. ULC's most recent MDIF acquisition.

The Denver region has an affordable housing shortage of more than 80,000 rental units and approximately 50 percent of existing residents are cost burdened due to housing expenses. In addition, commercial and industrial real estate market rental costs have increased over five percent in the last 18 months. This has been a consistent trend over the last several years that has made displacement a reality for thousands of residents, organizations, and school programs.

To help address these issues, Urban Land Conservancy (ULC) is excited to announce Colorado Housing and Finance Authority (CHFA) has committed another $2.5 million to the Metro Denver Impact Facility (MDIF), a revolving loan resource for the purpose of stewarding and developing beneficial real estate. Launched in the Fall of 2018, MDIF has allowed ULC to support the creation and preservation of permanently affordable housing, community facilities, schools, and affordable commercial space in transit-accessible locations to improve the health and vitality of neighborhoods.

MDIF finances property acquisitions with patient, low-interest capital for five or seven years as development, take-out or permanent financing options are identified. In certain instances, loans will support both the acquisition and immediate capital improvements necessary to stabilize an operating property. Each acquisition will be locally underwritten by FirstBank, who committed up to $25 million in matching loan capital for MDIF.  Smaller loans committed by six other lending partners including CHFA have been matched dollar-for-dollar by First Bank and resulted in $39.5 million for MDIF. MDIF has supported six acquisitions to date including the Harlan Nonprofit Center, East and West, South Platte Crossing, Inca Commons, Brown Construction Property, Westminster Triangle, and the Hudson at the Holly building. CHFA previously committed $2.5 million in 2018, bringing their total investment in the MDIF to $5 million.

CHFA’s mission is to strengthen Colorado by investing in affordable housing and community development. Since 1974, CHFA has invested more than $22 billion into Colorado’s economy to support affordable homeownership, affordable rental housing, and economic development throughout the state.

“CHFA’s vision is that everyone in Colorado should have the opportunity for housing stability and economic prosperity. We focus on helping Coloradans live affordably and offering opportunities for businesses to thrive,” said Cris White, Executive Director and CEO of CHFA. “We are excited to announce our continued partnership with ULC and the MDIF. CHFA has committed additional funds to MDIF, which will help grow this resource and its beneficial real estate impact, ultimately helping to strengthen affordable housing and community development.”

ULC’s work using MDIF would not be possible without its lending partners. MDIF is modeled to finance property acquisitions with low-interest capital for five to seven years as development, take-out, or permanent financing options are identified. Each acquisition will be locally underwritten by FirstBank, who committed up to $25 million in loan capital for MDIF. Smaller loans from other lending partners are leveraged 100 percent, with FirstBank financing matching every impact investment loan made. FirstBank has committed $25,000,000 in loan capital; and six other lending partners, including two contributions from CHFA, have committed a total of $39,500,000.